Sunday, October 29, 2006

It is starting early this year ...

I was in CVS yesterday, with a friend, looking for a cheap alarm clock. It's a few days before Halloween, and there was the expected hubbub. Lots of overpriced miniature candy bars. A rack of small spandex costumes. Superman, complete with pectoral padding. Some ballerinas. A ninja. None to fit me, of course. They only have little kid sizes.

We were looking through the greeting cards, just because they were there. I was tempted to buy several, because they were funny and my mom would get a kick out of them, but luckily I didn't have any cash in my pocket so I was spared the $4.50 Hallmark charges these days. Greeting cards are weirdly fascinating. They are cultural artifacts. Extraterrestrial anthropologists will build whole careers on them.

Finally we tore ourselves away from the spectacle and headed toward the checkout. And stopped short, because I saw something in the bargain bin that I couldn't wrap my head around. It was a role of Chanukah wrapping paper, decorated with dreidles, mogen davids, and menorahs, in blue and yellow of course. Right next to the ballerinas, ninjas, and inflatable pumpkins.

Today is October 29. Chanukah begins on 25 Kislev, which this year corresponds to the evening of December 15. That's over six weeks away. Usually, the Christmas stuff doesn't really get rolling until after Thanksgiving. Usually, the Chanukah stuff doesn't come out until right around Christmas, which, usually, is too late.

What are they thinking? Did they mis-judge the date last year and miss it? Are they putting it out early this year just in case? Don't they have calendars?

The really sick part is, I am strongly tempted to buy it. It's not particularly nice Chanukah paper, but I know that by the time Chanukah rolls around there won't be any in the stores. If Murphy was Jewish his law would have been, whatever holiday is coming up, you can be sure the stores will be well-stocked with supplies for a different holiday. Matzohs at Rosh Hashanah. Latke mix at Purim. Hamentashn at Pesach. And nothing much at Chanukah, because they always get the date wrong, even this year when it's right before Christmas.

So there you have it friends. It is starting early this year. It knows when you've been naughty, even if it doesn't know from the Day of Atonement. It knows when you've been nice, but it doesn't know from apples and honey. It flies through the sky on a sleigh pulled by reindeer. And you better duck and cover, because the capitalist hegemonic Christmas Season will knock the yarmulke right off of your head.

1 comment:

Sally Dillon said...

Davey, Lots of nice writing here. I will keep reading. thanks